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  1. #1
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    RSD MIddleChild - CrMo

    As if I wasn't confused enough ...add another one to the list - MIDDLECHILD Chromoly - RSD

    More pics here - https://www.facebook.com/RSD-Bikes-299341806841706/

    Head Angle - 64.5į....415-430 mm Chain Stay...which I really have no appreciation for, quite frankly.

    And at $1000 CDN more than what you can get a Sarge for now...and $600 more than what you can get a FS Wildcat for now - I have no idea.

    Me thinks I'll have to wait until the snow melts and try them out before I decide anything...I just have no frame of reference.

  2. #2
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    I really like my Sergeant. But I would not pay this money for this bike. It does have XT, but the rims aren't that great IMO.

  3. #3
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    This addresses the single thing I would change on my 2017 Ragley BigWig: chainstay length (currently at 435mm).

    The thought of being able to slam the chainstays into the 415-420mm range sounds mighty tasty!
    I like 'em long, low, slack and playful

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob_D View Post
    Head Angle - 64.5į....
    Keep in mind, this is a hard tail - so you can't directly compare static head tube angles to your full suspension bike.

    64.5* (static) head tube angle on a hardtail will be 66* when you're sitting on the bike and riding it. So it'll feel very much like a hardtail version of the new school, long travel 29ers that are the rage right now (E29, Wreckoning, GG Smash, etc.).

    And believe me - a long, low, slack, steel AM 29er hardtail is a very, very fun thing!
    I like 'em long, low, slack and playful

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    Quote Originally Posted by 06HokieMTB View Post
    64.5* (static) head tube angle on a hardtail will be 66* when you're sitting on the bike and riding it. So it'll feel very much like a hardtail version of the new school, long travel 29ers that are the rage right now (E29, Wreckoning, GG Smash, etc.).

    And believe me - a long, low, slack, steel AM 29er hardtail is a very, very fun thing!
    Ah...I learn something every hour!

    When I compare the MiddleChild ($3,200 CDN) to RSD's own steel Big Chief 29er (25% off - $2,050 CDN now):
    - Child HT slacker by 2.5*
    - Child ST steeper by 2.0*
    - Child 21 mm shorter ETT
    - Child 20 mm shorter ChainStay
    - Child 10 mm lower BB
    - Child 20 mm less BB drop
    - Child 30 mm LESS Stack
    - Child 30 mm MORE Reach
    - Child 32 mm longer WheelBase

    I don't know what all those mean...but I feel smarter writing them down.

  6. #6
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    Remember, the BigChief is a 29+ bike, where the MiddleChild is a 27.5+ (and presumably 29er).

    And, not sure I follow your listed numbers. Looking at a Size Large Child and Chief:

    Large Child ETT is 42mm LONGER than the Large Chief. (642mm vs 600mm)

    The Child has a massively longer reach than the Chief (good thing)
    I like 'em long, low, slack and playful

  7. #7
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    That geo in titanium might convince me to buy it as a frame and move the components on my current plus hardtail over.
    Patrick

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    Love the Child! I'm torn between the Guerrilla Gravity Pedalhead and the Middlechild. The GG is made here in CO, but the Child comes in significantly cheaper than a similarly built Pedalhead.
    Pjames12 check out the Kingdom Vendetta X2! Titanium frame with very similar specs to the Child. Seriously stuck here... I love all three! Can't wait to pull the trigger on one of em!

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    Quote Originally Posted by tjstlouis View Post
    Love the Child! I'm torn between the Guerrilla Gravity Pedalhead and the Middlechild. The GG is made here in CO, but the Child comes in significantly cheaper than a similarly built Pedalhead.
    Pjames12 check out the Kingdom Vendetta X2! Titanium frame with very similar specs to the Child. Seriously stuck here... I love all three! Can't wait to pull the trigger on one of em!
    Yeah, I saw the Vendetta X2...if it could fit a 3.0 size tire and come in the polished color I'd probably buy it. Just not a fan of the raw frame color. And then the Vendetta LS is just so much pricier, and still has a max size of 2,8.
    Patrick

  10. #10
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    I'm thinking Alex has hit a home run with the MiddleChild.
    "I ride to clear my head, my head is clearer when I'm riding SS. Therefore, I choose to ride SS."~ Fullrange Drew

  11. #11
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    This iteration is a take from a couple places that could be interesting on many levels.
    So many + and fats were nothing more than a repurposed commuter geometry, thus a deal breaker from the word go.
    The Middlechild sounds like a play time fun factory. Hmm, might need to get one out and see how trialsy it can be...
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  12. #12
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    How would this bike perform with say, 2.5" tires instead of the 2.8? I'm not a yuge fan of plus tires that big.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kpdemello View Post
    How would this bike perform with say, 2.5" tires instead of the 2.8? I'm not a yuge fan of plus tires that big.
    Um, +tires are that small and a couple choices are 3.25. Frankly, less than 2.8 is a minus tire.

    I would love to take an MC out for a street session and find out what it performs like.
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    Minus tires are where it's at for me.

    Was just looking at the geometry and seeing that the BB height is already pretty low at 320 mm. My Bronson is 340mm, which I thought was already fairly low. Might be kind of dicey to put smaller tires on this thing, which, unfortunately, kind of rules it out for me.

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    As for performance with 2.5's, keep in mind, there are some that are heavier than my 4.8's which is wholly unacceptable. With the BB already at a low position smaller tires may be outta the question.
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by kpdemello View Post
    Minus tires are where it's at for me.

    Was just looking at the geometry and seeing that the BB height is already pretty low at 320 mm. My Bronson is 340mm, which I thought was already fairly low. Might be kind of dicey to put smaller tires on this thing, which, unfortunately, kind of rules it out for me.
    You canít compare the B.B. height of a hardtail and full sus. Dynamic changes in fork length will lower the B.B. of a hardtail much less than dynamic changes in both the rear shock and fork of a full sus. 320 is actually quite tall compared to a lot of bikes like this. Run with a 130 fork itís more than 15mm higher than a Whyte 905 for example.

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    All BB heights should be listed as sagged.

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    Quote Originally Posted by geraldooka View Post
    You canít compare the B.B. height of a hardtail and full sus. Dynamic changes in fork length will lower the B.B. of a hardtail much less than dynamic changes in both the rear shock and fork of a full sus. 320 is actually quite tall compared to a lot of bikes like this. Run with a 130 fork itís more than 15mm higher than a Whyte 905 for example.
    Hmm. Food for thought. 15mm ought to be enough to compensate for the difference between a 2.8 and a 2.5, no?

    Honestly the bigger problem is explaining to the wife why yet another bike appeared in the garage...

  19. #19
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    I have one of those wives that never notices that kind of stuff. If she does itís too late anyways. I was suggesting the 130 fork on the MC just to directly compare against the Whyte as it is specified with a 130 as well. At 140 the MC is 320 with 27.5+ supposedly. B.B. height is pretty personal The only way I could confirm it for my use is to test. For me with a 165 crank Iím happy at 310 for a 120 hardtail.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by kpdemello View Post
    Hmm. Food for thought. 15mm ought to be enough to compensate for the difference between a 2.8 and a 2.5, no?

    Honestly the bigger problem is explaining to the wife why yet another bike appeared in the garage...
    Simple answer, they are breeding! Or the it just followed me home...
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  21. #21
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    What would be a good 29er tire size that would be comparable to the 650b 2.8s so that I don't run into low bb issues etc? Thinking of potentially getting a budget 29er wheelset for just around town, some paved trails, maybe a bit of commuting if needed. Would keep aggressive DHFs for real trails obviously. 2.4" minimum? Could I get away with fast rolling 2.25-2.3s, lets say on 25-27mm id rims? Just thinking aloud, have not done any research on this yet.
    2018 RSD Middlechild
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    I talked to Alex (RSD owner) today and he said he literally never gets pedal strikes. That was a concern of mine as well but the BB really isn't close to as low as other bikes. If you are that worried about it - get 170mm cranks and problem solved.

    I was getting pedal strikes on my 10mm lower BB (honzo with 175mm cranks) 170 cleared it up and I couldnt really tell a different in the 5mm difference.

    That being said - Does this price point for the child seem right? I believe YT is offering FS bikes with quality components for less. Too bad they are using PF BBs, though.

  23. #23
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    Did I see someone say that the Middlechild could be ran with 29x2.6 tires? If so that's pretty cool.

    I still hope for a Cromo Sergeant with updates to make it lighter.
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    Quote Originally Posted by tantrum007 View Post
    I talked to Alex (RSD owner) today and he said he literally never gets pedal strikes. That was a concern of mine as well but the BB really isn't close to as low as other bikes. If you are that worried about it - get 170mm cranks and problem solved.

    I was getting pedal strikes on my 10mm lower BB (honzo with 175mm cranks) 170 cleared it up and I couldnt really tell a different in the 5mm difference.

    That being said - Does this price point for the child seem right? I believe YT is offering FS bikes with quality components for less. Too bad they are using PF BBs, though.
    The Honzo BB should be at least 15mm higher, maybe 25 depending on which version of the frame.

    Sent from my VS988 using Tapatalk

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    Has anyone got one yet. Looking for some ride reports.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fuzzy Dunlop01 View Post
    The Honzo BB should be at least 15mm higher, maybe 25 depending on which version of the frame.

    Sent from my VS988 using Tapatalk
    Honzo should be LOWER*

    Sent from my VS988 using Tapatalk

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    Quote Originally Posted by HOLSHOT59 View Post
    Has anyone got one yet. Looking for some ride reports.
    This


    Sent from my VS988 using Tapatalk

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    Quote Originally Posted by HOLSHOT59 View Post
    Has anyone got one yet. Looking for some ride reports.
    Check out fat-bike.com

    They have one with Dustin Carlson testing in Utah.

    I really wanna add one to my 3 RSD collection but I need another bike like a hole in the head!

    It could be really awesome with a -20 or zero drop BB.
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  29. #29
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    RSD MIddleChild - CrMo-xxdvktrh.jpg

    RSD MIddleChild - CrMo-dcrrremh.jpg

    RSD MIddleChild - CrMo-fls2skhh.jpg

    RSD MIddleChild - CrMo-sfolpirh.jpg
    2018 RSD Middlechild
    2010 Giant STP SS

  30. #30
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    So what are you guys thinking of the bike. Thinking about ordering one soon.

  31. #31
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    Cool-blue Rhythm

    Full suspension bikes are under 30 pounds these days.
    No Hard Tail, not even a plus bike should be over 30

    Just over 30 pounds with a dropper,
    I'll stick to my large frame aluminum dropper equipped plus bike at 27.5 pounds.

    I wonder how many even notice that some Hard Tails are heavy ?
    Maybe It's not that big of a deal but I climb some big hills.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Osco View Post
    Full suspension bikes are under 30 pounds these days.
    No Hard Tail, not even a plus bike should be over 30

    Just over 30 pounds with a dropper,
    I'll stick to my large frame aluminum dropper equipped plus bike at 27.5 pounds.

    I wonder how many even notice that some Hard Tails are heavy ?
    Maybe It's not that big of a deal but I climb some big hills.
    what bike are you riding? I'm open to suggestions.

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Osco View Post
    Full suspension bikes are under 30 pounds these days.
    No Hard Tail, not even a plus bike should be over 30

    Just over 30 pounds with a dropper,
    I'll stick to my large frame aluminum dropper equipped plus bike at 27.5 pounds.

    I wonder how many even notice that some Hard Tails are heavy ?
    Maybe It's not that big of a deal but I climb some big hills.
    I think you are putting too much emphasis on weight. Some bikes ride way lighter than they feel.
    Quite a few of us climb big hills with over 30lb hardtails.
    "I ride to clear my head, my head is clearer when I'm riding SS. Therefore, I choose to ride SS."~ Fullrange Drew

  34. #34
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    Can anyone compare one of these to a Niner Ros? I had a niner Sir in a medium before the Ros and the Ros I now have is a small.

    I sold the Sir to pick up the Ros. The Sir was crazy fast but with a 27.2 seat tube and no internal routing a dropper was not in the cards. I like the Ros but I feel rather cramped on the small. All my other bikes are mediums.

    If I pick one of the RSD bikes up it'll be swapped to SS and end up with my DVO fork on it. I figure for the price I'll buy a complete and sell the parts.
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  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by terrible View Post
    Can anyone compare one of these to a Niner Ros? I had a niner Sir in a medium before the Ros and the Ros I now have is a small.

    I sold the Sir to pick up the Ros. The Sir was crazy fast but with a 27.2 seat tube and no internal routing a dropper was not in the cards. I like the Ros but I feel rather cramped on the small. All my other bikes are mediums.

    If I pick one of the RSD bikes up it'll be swapped to SS and end up with my DVO fork on it. I figure for the price I'll buy a complete and sell the parts.
    That might be a lil difficult as the Middle has a "bike park" undertone to its geometry. Dunno if Niner offers anything that playful.
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  36. #36
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    "I ride to clear my head, my head is clearer when I'm riding SS. Therefore, I choose to ride SS."~ Fullrange Drew

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    I just got my Middle Child last Thursday. Don't have a lot of time on it yet but what a fun capable bike.

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by nitrousjunky View Post

    Thanks for that! Good to see a review, saw recent comments, but maybe you have to be signed in to add to them as I didn't see the way?

    Not sure why anyone would review a bike with tubes and then critique the bike for flats. Maybe if the bike or review was intended as a first time rider review? (but an aggressive geometry longer travel steel hardtail really shouldn't be the what you pick for such a review or suggest for first timers)

    Also, riding technique, tires, air pressure have WAY more to do with getting a pinch flat than the rim profile. (Minions, so it wasn't the tire, he did at least fess up about technique but I didn't see the pressure/rider weight?)

    Wish RSD would have done a RAW version...

    ALSO, I just noticed the bike is advertised at 650US right next to this thread. But it's 770US on their website, there is something about a 10% tariff increase, but that's more like a 20% increase...? So half of that is the President's fault, but half of that is...?
    Last edited by stiingya; 10-03-2018 at 10:31 PM.

  39. #39
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    Frame is $649. The new Tariff is 10%, so + $65 + $60 shipping. Rounded down = $769
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    Quote Originally Posted by stiingya View Post
    Thanks for that! Good to see a review, saw recent comments, but maybe you have to be signed in to add to them as I didn't see the way?

    Not sure why anyone would review a bike with tubes and then critique the bike for flats. Maybe if the bike or review was intended as a first time rider review? (but an aggressive geometry longer travel steel hardtail really shouldn't be the what you pick for such a review or suggest for first timers)

    Also, riding technique, tires, air pressure have WAY more to do with getting a pinch flat than the rim profile. (Minions, so it wasn't the tire, he did at least fess up about technique but I didn't see the pressure/rider weight?)

    Wish RSD would have done a RAW version...

    ALSO, I just noticed the bike is advertised at 650US right next to this thread. But it's 770US on their website, there is something about a 10% tariff increase, but that's more like a 20% increase...? So half of that is the President's fault, but half of that is...?
    I agree with what you are saying about the review. The wheels are the only week point I see in the build. I figured I'll run them until they break and replace them then. So far the wheels and tires are holding up pretty well to some pretty nasty rocks. Have a couple big slices and gouges in the tires after about 75ish miles.

  41. #41
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    Team, thought I should chime in.

    I've had a middle child since last spring and it's the best hardtail I've had so far (previous: 16 Honzo, 15 Rootdown, 12 OnOne 456, 11 Kona Unit).

    I was a bit worried it would be too slack, now I can't believe I ever rode a steeper bike, this works so well.

    Set up:
    140mm Pike with short offset (41?)
    27.5 x 2.6 Nobby Nics
    Chainstay slammed
    150mm dropper

    Love this bike. I rode it with 2.8s but now with 2.6s the thing flies up shit, but doesn't feel held back going down. I'm not really sold on the benefits of PLUS tires unless your trails area really rocky/crusty/ugly or you are a bad rider and want a confidence boost. Not worth the weight / rolling penatly for me.

    I ride a process 111 as well, which is great, but I actually find this is the bike I feel the need to chat about after a ride. Just rips and feels super confident going off and down stuff, while getting me up super tight switchbacks without an issue. Love the way it looks in stealth black, too.

    https://www.instagram.com/p/Bm9EoYjh...on_share_sheet

  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by RSD Bikes View Post
    Frame is $649. The new Tariff is 10%, so + $65 + $60 shipping. Rounded down = $769
    Thanks for the clarification. Saw the $60 bucks to ship, but didn't realize it was included. NICE!

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    Anyone try their Child as a 29er. I have an extra set of 29er wheels and am trying to decide if I should set them up to run as a single speed with some lighter tires or just leave a regular cassette on it. Thoughts?

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    I'd also like to know.

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    Curious whats everyone's thoughts on throwing the new RSD rigid fork designed for the new Sergeant v3 on the Middlechild for winter duty? Both Middlechild and Sergeant v3 come stock with 140mm 550AC fork, but Middlechild is 2deg slacker, but not sure how much that matters.

    https://www.rsdbikes.com/product/510mm-aluminum-fork/
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    Quote Originally Posted by kryten View Post
    Curious whats everyone's thoughts on throwing the new RSD rigid fork designed for the new Sergeant v3 on the Middlechild for winter duty? Both Middlechild and Sergeant v3 come stock with 140mm 550AC fork, but Middlechild is 2deg slacker, but not sure how much that matters.

    https://www.rsdbikes.com/product/510mm-aluminum-fork/
    Sounds like it would be a fun setup to switch things up. Maybe even throw a 3.8 fat tire on the front with a 3.0 out back.

  47. #47
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    What's the benefit of running rigid in winter over suspension?

    Just my opinion, but 3vs3.8 in the front with only 3 in the back isn't going to make much difference on snow.

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    Quote Originally Posted by chelboed View Post
    What's the benefit of running rigid in winter over suspension?

    Just my opinion, but 3vs3.8 in the front with only 3 in the back isn't going to make much difference on snow.
    I would stick with 3" front and back. I don't really need a fatbike anymore, enough traffic on my trails that it packs down quickly. I just like simplicity for winter. Had plenty of issues with droppers, hydraulic brakes and suspension in winter. Maybe I'm just really unlucky.
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    Hmmm...a decent quality fork like a Pike that I believe comes spec'd on the Child should be fine in winter.

    Either way, it should work great on that bike and could be a fun way to mix it up a bit.

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    Mine was a frame build and has a Yari on it. Will see what happens, but if I ever go that route, I think this may be the fork to go with.
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    Yari is just a Lyrik with a MoCo damper. Bombproof fork. I love them. I've got one on my trail bike. Overkill but will live forever. I can't imagine needing more on a hardtail.

    I can remember riding some of the early suspension forks in mountain biking. It's amazing the crap we put ourselves through with forks like the Mag21...Indy...Psylo. Most people now days would rather ride rigid than that old crap.

    But Motion Control damping with 34mm stanchions and QR15 Boost with disc brakes? Holy smokes, it's a good time to be a biker. Charger RC3 is kinda over the top on a hardtail IMO. Yari is the pimp!

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    Cracked the rear rim. Replace it and added cushcore will see if it helps any.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails RSD MIddleChild - CrMo-b92125ee-f05e-4e28-b8b2-1e4fefff82dc.jpg  


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    This bike really ticks all the right boxes for me. I am really interested in running it 27.5 x 2.4 though. Wondering what your thoughts on this would be?

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    Quote Originally Posted by scoon View Post
    This bike really ticks all the right boxes for me. I am really interested in running it 27.5 x 2.4 though. Wondering what your thoughts on this would be?
    my concern for where I ride would be that it is lowering the bottom bracket. But depending on where you ride it could make for a more playful bike.

  55. #55
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    I just finished up building my RSD middle child. What a blast!




  56. #56
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    Dammit!

    Anyone know how to turn off the power on the Tennis Ball Yellow so the batteries don't wear down?

    Needless to say, a lovely brown box arrived yesterday with "Brown Santa" ringing the doorbell! Yay!! The collective grows to include a bright as the sun yeller frame! Cannot wait to build up a single speed fun factory!
    Get fAt, Stay fAt, Ride fAt
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  57. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by scoon View Post
    This bike really ticks all the right boxes for me. I am really interested in running it 27.5 x 2.4 though. Wondering what your thoughts on this would be?
    Go for it. It'll only lower the bb by 1/4-1/2". I don't think it'll be a problem, especially if you run 170mm cranks. I love a low bb feel anyway, but some people don't.

  58. #58
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    Frame arrived last night. Stoked to build it up with parts I've had stored in boxes for too long. I'm hoping I made the right choice by going with a medium (I'm just under 5'9"). I figured I could run a short stem and might need to go with a shorter dropper post. I'll post photos once it's built!

  59. #59
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    I think you made the right call with a medium, especially if you ride steep terrain.

  60. #60
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    That new bike smell...

    The Middlechild is built up as a single speed! This damn bike has quite a pithy attitude and is a blast. Cannot wait to hit the desert when it drys out some.
    Thankya, Alex!

    Rear dropouts are almost slammed with the exception of adjustment to set chain tension. Tires are Nobby Nic and Rocket Ron 27.5 x 3.0 just cause I like the feel of 3.0 vs. 2.less. Clearance is good where it really counts, over the crown of the tire. Side clearance is 7-8mm which is peachy for a beanpole ass rider that does not to the bull in a china shop.

    I love the hell outta my pithy, tennis ball yeller bike!

    Streetin was a blast as snow was falling, bike was sending a stripe up my back, and there were plenty of wonderful obstacles to test the session ability.

    Fun ride, playtime bike, indeed...
    Get fAt, Stay fAt, Ride fAt
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  61. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by BansheeRune View Post
    That new bike smell...

    The Middlechild is built up as a single speed! This damn bike has quite a pithy attitude and is a blast. Cannot wait to hit the desert when it drys out some.
    Thankya, Alex!

    Rear dropouts are almost slammed with the exception of adjustment to set chain tension. Tires are Nobby Nic and Rocket Ron 27.5 x 3.0 just cause I like the feel of 3.0 vs. 2.less. Clearance is good where it really counts, over the crown of the tire. Side clearance is 7-8mm which is peachy for a beanpole ass rider that does not to the bull in a china shop.

    I love the hell outta my pithy, tennis ball yeller bike!

    Streetin was a blast as snow was falling, bike was sending a stripe up my back, and there were plenty of wonderful obstacles to test the session ability.

    Fun ride, playtime bike, indeed...
    Pics or it didnt happen, you know the rules.
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  62. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guy.Ford View Post
    Pics or it didnt happen, you know the rules.

    Phuck fones! I was busy snortin that new bike smell without interruption...
    Get fAt, Stay fAt, Ride fAt
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  63. #63
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    sixstringsteve,

    Let us know when you get some rides in on your middlechild. My list for a 29er steel hardtail is down to the moxie, pedalhead, ns eccentric, or middlechild.

  64. #64
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    Damn, the MIddleChild makes for a great single speed experience. It's been a pleasure to get out and test the new member of the collective.

    Sixstring, looking forward to hearing bout your new friend.
    Get fAt, Stay fAt, Ride fAt
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  65. #65
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    Here's mine... Built it up with parts off a Marin Rift Zone, rode it once, loved it and sold the Marin with the parts. Built it up as a 29er single speed, but just don't have time to ride as much as I used to and have another baby on the way. Decided to sell locally if anybody is interested and near Asheville, NC. Beautiful bike. Honestly, I bought it because I love the color, but it is a blast to ride. Customer service is also the best I have ever dealt with.

    RSD MIddleChild - CrMo-image.jpg
    RSD MIddleChild - CrMo-image.jpg

  66. #66
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    I'm so confused by that post. Where is the singlespeed?

  67. #67
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    Quote Originally Posted by mountainbiker24 View Post
    Here's mine... Built it up with parts off a Marin Rift Zone, rode it once, loved it and sold the Marin with the parts. Built it up as a 29er single speed, but just don't have time to ride as much as I used to and have another baby on the way. Decided to sell locally if anybody is interested and near Asheville, NC. Beautiful bike. Honestly, I bought it because I love the color, but it is a blast to ride. Customer service is also the best I have ever dealt with.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    I do like the colour.

    Keep the bike. You will need some mental health breaks with a new baby. Even a 45min ride close to home will change your head space and be therapeutic.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
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  68. #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by gerryl View Post
    sixstringsteve,

    Let us know when you get some rides in on your middlechild. My list for a 29er steel hardtail is down to the moxie, pedalhead, ns eccentric, or middlechild.

    I've been on 3 solid rides with it and I really like it. I tend to prefer technical terrain over long distance rides. I love the bike. Susprisingly enough, it's slightly stiffer at the bb junction thne my aluminum chameleon.

    I haven't ridden a moxie before, but I wanted a shorter chainstay than the pedal head, and I was worried the square tubing would be more riding than I want. I'm happy to answer any questions you have, but I am biased as I ride for rsd.

    For my riding style, I'd never feel comfortable on a hardtail with anything steeper than a 65*, hta.

  69. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by chelboed View Post
    I'm so confused by that post. Where is the singlespeed?
    In my garage. Those pics are of the original build that I rode once then stripped and sold on my Marin Rift Zone. It makes sense in my head, but likely not as much in print...

  70. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by mountainbiker24 View Post
    Here's mine... Built it up with parts off a Marin Rift Zone, rode it once, loved it and sold the Marin with the parts. Built it up as a 29er single speed, but just don't have time to ride as much as I used to and have another baby on the way. Decided to sell locally if anybody is interested and near Asheville, NC. Beautiful bike. Honestly, I bought it because I love the color, but it is a blast to ride. Customer service is also the best I have ever dealt with.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Click image for larger version. 

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    I thought the bike was the "new baby"!

    Good point, Vikb.
    Get fAt, Stay fAt, Ride fAt
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  71. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by vikb View Post
    I do like the colour.

    Keep the bike. You will need some mental health breaks with a new baby. Even a 45min ride close to home will change your head space and be therapeutic.
    Sound advice that I probably should take. However, I am building up a 509 Cycles Jabit fat bike, and I figure a couple wheelsets for that and I don't have time or need for a second bike. I've said that before and regretted it, but I really don't get out nearly as often as I used to. I'm excited about a second child, but mourning the death of my available riding time.

  72. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by BansheeRune View Post
    I thought the bike was the "new baby"!

    Good point, Vikb.
    Haha! Not this time.

  73. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by gerryl View Post
    sixstringsteve,

    Let us know when you get some rides in on your middlechild.


  74. #74
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    That trail looks like a riot!

  75. #75
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    Definitely one of my favorite trails out there. And most locals don't even know about it.

  76. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by sixstringsteve View Post
    I think you made the right call with a medium, especially if you ride steep terrain.
    Thanks sixstringsteve. Your video got me amped up for the Middle Child too. Fun looking trail!

  77. #77
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    The more I play with my new bike, the more hooked I become!

    Damn, I love the hell outta this bike! The handling, the ride and feel are just amazing. Singlespeed turns out to have been a truly excellent choice for this build, with its simplicity and getting the gearing right for mountain living has been great.

    While this frame is based on 2.8 being optimal, I have run Rocket Ron and Nobby Nic both ends in 3.0 with zero issue. There may be some 3.0's out there that are a tad too close for comfort however, the choices I have on hand offer plenty of clearance and feel like a match made in heaven.

    So Cal, did you order one yet?

    Steve, thanks for sharing the video. Good stuff to see some M/C dirtin goin on!
    Get fAt, Stay fAt, Ride fAt
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  78. #78
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    I really dig the vid too.

    So realistically...is a Rocket Ron and Nobby Nic not a true 3" tire, or does the bike actually clear a true 3"?

  79. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by So Cal RX View Post
    Frame arrived last night. Stoked to build it up with parts I've had stored in boxes for too long. I'm hoping I made the right choice by going with a medium (I'm just under 5'9"). I figured I could run a short stem and might need to go with a shorter dropper post. I'll post photos once it's built!
    Quote Originally Posted by sixstringsteve View Post
    I think you made the right call with a medium, especially if you ride steep terrain.
    Finally have mine built up. Bought new SLX brakes and a One Up dropper I'm waiting for, but otherwise built with parts I already had: old Fox 34 fork that was recently rebuilt by Fox with updated internals, Ibis 738 wheels, DHF 2.5 fr, Rekon 2.6 rear, NX crank, XT shifter/der. Weighs 30.5 which is funny only because it's ~3 lbs. heavier than my Mojo3. Will gain a little with the dropper, but will lose a little when I go tubeless. Trails here were rained out, so have only ridden it around the complex. Medium feels great (50mm stem). Hopefully will get it out on the trails this coming weekend and will post my thoughts.
    RSD MIddleChild - CrMo-img_5850.jpgRSD MIddleChild - CrMo-img_5867.jpg

  80. #80
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    Quote Originally Posted by BansheeRune View Post
    The more I play with my new bike, the more hooked I become!

    Damn, I love the hell outta this bike! The handling, the ride and feel are just amazing. Singlespeed turns out to have been a truly excellent choice for this build, with its simplicity and getting the gearing right for mountain living has been great.

    While this frame is based on 2.8 being optimal, I have run Rocket Ron and Nobby Nic both ends in 3.0 with zero issue. There may be some 3.0's out there that are a tad too close for comfort however, the choices I have on hand offer plenty of clearance and feel like a match made in heaven.

    So Cal, did you order one yet?

    Steve, thanks for sharing the video. Good stuff to see some M/C dirtin goin on!
    Great to hear the stoke for this bike! Just posted my build update. Still need to get it out on the dirt. Hopefully soon!

  81. #81
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    Quote Originally Posted by chelboed View Post
    I really dig the vid too.

    So realistically...is a Rocket Ron and Nobby Nic not a true 3" tire, or does the bike actually clear a true 3"?
    My pair of NN's measure 2.99 @ 12 psi. RR's are very close to the same. Frankly, my interest drops like bus out the back of a C-130 when tires are labeled anything less than 3.0. Clearance is plentiful as this rig is capable of 29 x 2.6. It is narrow back there with 8-10mm side clearance and 18-20mm over the crown of the tire.
    I'll try a Crux just for shits n grins.


    So Cal, thanks for the update! Looks da part, indeed.
    My lemon flavored bike is a large with a 70mm stem for that straight 8 length necessary for a bloke that can pass a joint across a room without getting outta the chair. So far it's only been a few narrow passages that require finesse and street sessions. Mud and snow are king right now.
    Get fAt, Stay fAt, Ride fAt
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  82. #82
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    Noice!!!

  83. #83
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    Quote Originally Posted by sixstringsteve View Post
    That looked like fun? What trail is that?

  84. #84
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    Those trails are in Tucson, az. Several different trails. Most was on cowboy slick rock and middle gate. It's way steeper in person than it looks on video (as it always is). I've got some Sedona videos on the Mc coming soon. Hit hiline and hogs on the middle child. It was pretty awesome.

  85. #85
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    Damn, six string... I need to get down there again soon for daily ride addiction fixes and Mom's cooking...
    Not to mention my three RSD's could use some warm, sunny dirtin!
    Get fAt, Stay fAt, Ride fAt
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  86. #86
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    Quote Originally Posted by sixstringsteve View Post
    very cool! Do you feel the difference in weight vs the Santa Cruz?

  87. #87
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    I got mine last fall, built up with the kit off of my GG Smash after I sold that frame. Rode some DH on it, took it out to Moab, loved it! Over the winter I decided to swap over to 27.5 for a bit softer ride...no rides on the new wheels yet but I can't wait! Gotta wait for ski season to end first though...


  88. #88
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    Not while riding. I only feel the difference in weight when I pick it up and load it on a bike rack. It's kind of like being able to feel the difference between when your water bottle is full or empty on your bike while riding. It's tons more fun to ride than my chameon.

  89. #89
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    Quote Originally Posted by So Cal RX View Post
    Finally have mine built up. Bought new SLX brakes and a One Up dropper I'm waiting for, but otherwise built with parts I already had: old Fox 34 fork that was recently rebuilt by Fox with updated internals, Ibis 738 wheels, DHF 2.5 fr, Rekon 2.6 rear, NX crank, XT shifter/der. Weighs 30.5 which is funny only because it's ~3 lbs. heavier than my Mojo3. Will gain a little with the dropper, but will lose a little when I go tubeless. Trails here were rained out, so have only ridden it around the complex. Medium feels great (50mm stem). Hopefully will get it out on the trails this coming weekend and will post my thoughts.
    The trails dried out, so I finally took the Middlechild out for a ride!

    RSD MIddleChild - CrMo-img_5877.jpg

    First off, the geometry and fit felt great. Glad I went with a medium. I still may try a shorter stem, but the reach didn't feel excessive. The bottom bracket height actually felt higher than my other bikes, so no concern for me running 27.5 x 2.5 and 27.5 x 2.6 at all. On lap 1, I had my fork psi too high, but after I adjusted it, the all mountain hardtail concept suddenly made much more sense

    Overall impressions of the bike: it makes technical, rocky climbs a bit more challenging vs. my FS bike, but overall is very capable and a whole lot of fun.

    I plan to install my dropper today and also convert to tubeless, but so far so good.

  90. #90
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    Running lower psi is crucial for technic climbing on a hardtail. In some instances my hardtail climbs better than my full suspension (I run plus tires at low pressures), and in other instances my full suspension is able to maintain traction a little better. Glsd you're loving your muddle child, it's a fantastic bike.

  91. #91
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    Congratz, So Cal.... The adventures ahead will be awesome, indeed!

    The MIddleChild has been a load of fun. Now I need some dry dirt for a good shakedown.
    Fork is set for a good singltrack ride and waiting. With 3.0's, air pressure will be tweaked
    on the trail.
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  92. #92
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    I'm running cuschcore on my middle child and it's a really great investment. It helps me find the sweet spot for tire pressure better. And it doesn't make the tires squirmy and it protects the rim too.

  93. #93
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    Quote Originally Posted by hardtail party View Post
    Running lower psi is crucial for technic climbing on a hardtail. In some instances my hardtail climbs better than my full suspension (I run plus tires at low pressures), and in other instances my full suspension is able to maintain traction a little better. Glsd you're loving your muddle child, it's a fantastic bike.
    Good call on the tire pressure. I had the psi at ~28 to be conservative because of the tubes. Iíll lower that down when I go tubeless, and also look into the cushcore. I did get the dropper on today

    RSD MIddleChild - CrMo-663b6b9e-0f79-4179-8ddf-5a7f151398f9.jpg

  94. #94
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    Nice! To save 15% at cushcore, use coupon code "HTparty19"

  95. #95
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    The middle child is an amazing climber too.


    Last edited by hardtail party; 03-24-2019 at 08:45 AM.

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    How does the MC compare to Surly's V 2.0 Instagator?
    I tried my best (really?) to compare numbers, but, my eyes glaze over and my mind wanders off to the trail head.....
    Has anyone ridden each?

  97. #97
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    I haven't ridden an instigator, but it looks pretty close in geo to a chameleon, something I have ridden a lot. On paper, it will ride quite different from a middle child. An instigator has a nice short chainstay (same as the middle child) but a steeper head angle. For flatter trails and climbs, most people will prefer the instigator. For technical downhills and faster speeds, the middle child will feel a lot more stable and enjoyable.

  98. #98
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1spd1way View Post
    How does the MC compare to Surly's V 2.0 Instagator?
    I tried my best (really?) to compare numbers, but, my eyes glaze over and my mind wanders off to the trail head.....
    Has anyone ridden each?
    If you drop a -2 deg headset into the Instigator you'll have a HTA of 65.5 deg vs the MC at 64.5 deg. That closes the gap on that geo element quite a bit.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
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  99. #99
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    I'm not a surly expert, but it appears that the surly is a non-boost frame (142mm). Good info if you're trying to swap an existing wheelset over.

  100. #100
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1spd1way View Post
    How does the MC compare to Surly's V 2.0 Instagator?
    I tried my best (really?) to compare numbers, but, my eyes glaze over and my mind wanders off to the trail head.....
    Has anyone ridden each?
    Instagator 2.0 is 26+ and MC is 27.5+. Unless you are moving 26+ stuff over from another frame you are better of with a MC.
    Change begins by doing something different.

  101. #101
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    My gator is now 27.5+.
    Just wondering if it's worth swapping frames.

  102. #102
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    Thanks for the replies.
    Small frames are out of stock at RSD, so navel gazing at this point.

  103. #103
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    What ride characteristics are you looking for? Anything you don't like about your instagator?

  104. #104
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1spd1way View Post
    Thanks for the replies.
    Small frames are out of stock at RSD, so navel gazing at this point.
    Guess I'll have to wait for re-stock too!

    I think some of my Airborne Griffin parts would swap over ok. Although I think I have to convert the Manitou fork to 140mm

  105. #105
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    Love the gator.
    It's getting to be spring time in Maine.....new bike fever is raging.

    Must resist......

  106. #106
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1spd1way View Post
    love the gator.
    It's getting to be spring time in maine.....new bike fever is raging.

    Must resist......
    resistance is futile!!
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  107. #107
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1spd1way View Post
    My gator is now 27.5+.
    Just wondering if it's worth swapping frames.
    All in all, this is a question you will have to sort. I am not familiar with the Gator or it's geometry.
    I can say, the M/C is a very fun playful bike. Weight, pfft! I don't tend to worry too much there lest it's plain obese.

    One thing, you might wanna ping Alex to get an idea of lead time on it. I know the Sergeant is mid spring arrival for the new frame.
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  108. #108
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    hahhahha! You must comply!

  109. #109
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    Your technology will be added to our own...
    Get fAt, Stay fAt, Ride fAt
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  110. #110
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    RSD MIddleChild - CrMo-sunspot-3.jpg

    RSD MIddleChild - CrMo-sunspot-1.jpg

    Finally, some dirt is ready for treads! This bike loves singltrack, gully runs and punchy ascents with curvy descents following.
    The interesting thing is that it feels amazingly nimble for a bike wearing 3.0's on 50mm rims.
    Get fAt, Stay fAt, Ride fAt
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  111. #111
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    Quote Originally Posted by BansheeRune View Post
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Finally, some dirt is ready for treads! This bike loves singltrack, gully runs and punchy ascents with curvy descents following.
    The interesting thing is that it feels amazingly nimble for a bike wearing 3.0's on 50mm rims.
    Nice!!! What gearing combo is pictured?
    "I ride to clear my head, my head is clearer when I'm riding SS. Therefore, I choose to ride SS."~ Fullrange Drew

  112. #112
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    Here are a few pics of my middlechild build

    RSD MIddleChild - CrMo-img_1447.jpg

    RSD MIddleChild - CrMo-img_1436.jpg

    RSD MIddleChild - CrMo-img_1461.jpg

    RSD MIddleChild - CrMo-img_1440.jpg

    RSD Middlechild 4130 chromo frame - medium
    SR Suntour Auron set at 150mm
    The Inside Line mud fender
    WTB 29" Asym i29 rims on Hope hub (front) - DT Swiss 350 (rear)
    Shimano XT 11 speed derailleur/shifter
    Sunrace 11-46t Cassette
    SLX cranks with 34t Raceface narrow wide chainring
    Shimano Zee brakes
    Chromag FUBARS OSX chrome handle bars cut to 750mm
    Thompson X4 50mm stem
    Cane Creek Headset
    OneUp 170mm dropper post
    Nukeproof Horizon Sam Hill pedals
    Specialized Butcher GRID 2.6 front tire
    Maxxis Aggressor 2.3 DD rear tire
    Cushcore front and rear
    Last edited by chris705; 03-30-2019 at 08:13 AM.

  113. #113
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    Chris705. Nice build. Give a ride report when you have time. Glad to see a middlechild as a 29er. A cromoly 29er is on my list for this year.

  114. #114
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    Quote Originally Posted by gerryl View Post
    Chris705. Nice build. Give a ride report when you have time. Glad to see a middlechild as a 29er. A cromoly 29er is on my list for this year.
    I got my first ride on it today. It wasn't out in the rocky mountains like I hoped, since winter isn't giving up yet. So I settled for riding a mellow area near by my house.

    I am coming from a Kona Honzo and a Banshee Phantom, both in medium. Which are awesome bikes in their own ways. To compare geometry, the Middlechild is about 60mm longer in wheelbase and 20-30mm longer in reach than my previous bikes. Head angle is 3į slacker. Parts spec is almost identical to both bikes since I swapped parts over from the Phantom and the Honzo has an almost identical build.

    The climbs in this area are fairly mellow with a few steep sections. In the steeper bits I noticed a bit more wheel flop but nothing unmanageable.

    Descending in this network is also mellow. There are some wide open very fast sections. The Middlechild is much more stable and confident at speed. Garmin says my max speed was 51.5kph (32mph) and I did not feel overwhelmed with that speed. There's nothing special for cornering there as well, but today, since we are in the shoulder season, sun exposed areas are dry and shaded areas are still wet and greasy. I ended up getting sideways when there was a greasy corner in the shade. I can tell the length of the bike will make it very fun at high speed cornering.

    My only small concern about the bike is the bottom bracket height. Since it is a 650b+ bike it has a 40mm BB drop. 29er specific hardtail frames usually have closer to 60mm BB drops. Today, I couldn't figure out if this would affect the bikes handling enough on descents since this is not the kind of terrain I typically ride on. I also suspect the bottom bracket height will help with technical climbing, which there are many in the mountains nearby.

    I will update my impression of this frame once I get to ride it more in a variety of conditions.

    RSD MIddleChild - CrMo-img_1545.jpg

    Edit: I do not know why my some of my pics are being rotated 90į.

    But I gotta brag... That is a pretty sick huck to vertical...

  115. #115
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    Quote Originally Posted by nitrousjunky View Post
    Nice!!! What gearing combo is pictured?
    Thankya, Nitrous!

    28x18 at the moment. It's been great for punchy climbs that are steep. As for open flats, speed is good enough since I cadence high as a general rule.
    Fuel economy is expressed in sammiches per hour with this bike.

    Heya Chris! Nice build, indeed... Hope you can get in some quality time soon. All I have been able to do is much similar.
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  116. #116
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    I'm riding Bentonville for the next 2 weeks, and the middle child is the perfect bike for this terrain. I think I could get away with a 29er ss setup for most of this stuff.

  117. #117
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    How do you feel about the road gaps on a hardtail? I'm struggling with the thought of putting my Stache rear wheel through that type of torture.

  118. #118
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    I haven't seen the road gaps yet, but a smooth rider can get away with a lot on a hardtail, especially with cushcore.

  119. #119
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    Quote Originally Posted by chris705 View Post
    Here are a few pics of my middlechild build

    RSD Middlechild 4130 chromo frame - medium
    SR Suntour Auron set at 150mm
    The Inside Line mud fender
    WTB 29" Asym i29 rims on Hope hub (front) - DT Swiss 350 (rear)
    Shimano XT 11 speed derailleur/shifter
    Sunrace 11-46t Cassette
    SLX cranks with 34t Raceface narrow wide chainring
    Shimano Zee brakes
    Chromag FUBARS OSX chrome handle bars cut to 750mm
    Thompson X4 50mm stem
    Cane Creek Headset
    OneUp 170mm dropper post
    Nukeproof Horizon Sam Hill pedals
    Specialized Butcher GRID 2.6 front tire
    Maxxis Aggressor 2.3 DD rear tire
    Cushcore front and rear

    Do you have a weight for your build?

  120. #120
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    Quote Originally Posted by chelboed View Post
    How do you feel about the road gaps on a hardtail? I'm struggling with the thought of putting my Stache rear wheel through that type of torture.
    Not sure if you saw on my Instagram, but I cleared drop the hammer (road gap) and the diving board at coler on my middle child. The features are built extremely well, and it was a smooth landing.
    Last edited by hardtail party; 04-16-2019 at 05:31 PM.

  121. #121
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeckyll84 View Post
    Do you have a weight for your build?
    Its no light weight. 35 lbs. The cushcore and 1000+g tires have a lot to do with that weight

  122. #122
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    Quote Originally Posted by chris705 View Post
    My only small concern about the bike is the bottom bracket height. Since it is a 650b+ bike it has a 40mm BB drop. 29er specific hardtail frames usually have closer to 60mm BB drops. Today, I couldn't figure out if this would affect the bikes handling enough on descents since this is not the kind of terrain I typically ride on. I also suspect the bottom bracket height will help with technical climbing, which there are many in the mountains nearby.

    I will update my impression of this frame once I get to ride it more in a variety of conditions.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Edit: I do not know why my some of my pics are being rotated 90į.

    But I gotta brag... That is a pretty sick huck to vertical...

    Any updates on this? My concern was the "high" bottom bracket as well. Ill probably want to run 29" wheels and I'm 6'4" so Im top heavy as it is.

  123. #123
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    Fixing the image, it's too awesome not too

    RSD MIddleChild - CrMo-img_1545.jpg
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  124. #124
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    Quote Originally Posted by neabailey View Post
    Any updates on this? My concern was the "high" bottom bracket as well. Ill probably want to run 29" wheels and I'm 6'4" so Im top heavy as it is.
    With 29er, you could always run a 130mm fork instead of the 140mm
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  125. #125
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    Sunspot gets out for a lil singletrack railtime! Damn, I love the twists and turns with climbs and descents along the way. Singlespeed on the trail has been great! With the current build based on a 150mm fork, the BB is right where it belongs up and out of the dirt and lending to a playful, delightful ride. Floating the front end is dauntless and is very natural.

    RSD MIddleChild - CrMo-img_1232.jpg
    A look down a long winding descent that has hillside and a hellacious, rugged 800' drop... Texting and riding is the only way to do this part of the ride! :P

    RSD MIddleChild - CrMo-img_1230.jpg
    Twists
    RSD MIddleChild - CrMo-img_1228.jpg
    Turns
    RSD MIddleChild - CrMo-img_1224.jpg

    Partly cloudy, mild breeze/wind and 65... Like riding a bike with AC!

    Gear changeup took place and is now 30-18. More cogs ordered for additional changes in the very near future.
    Desert voyage is in order! Junktown or bust... 18 road or horse thief, perhaps a few more.

    ALEX!! You lil bastage!! Glad to hear Sea Otter was a good adventure for ya...
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  126. #126
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    Quote Originally Posted by neabailey View Post
    Any updates on this? My concern was the "high" bottom bracket as well. Ill probably want to run 29" wheels and I'm 6'4" so Im top heavy as it is.
    A stubborn winter and lazy spring hasn't allowed me to get as much time on this bike as I would like. I have 2 rides on my preferred type of terrain. I have noticed the change in head angle and length compared to my previous bikes more than BB height. It doesn't feel bad in that regards. It corners well, is stable at speed and on steeps.

    I am running my fork at 150mm. As well Suntours tend to have a slightly higher axle to crown than other forks. The BB on my Middlechild is 330mm vs 315mm on my Honzo with a 140mm fork. If you run your fork at 140mm or 130mm as RSD mentioned I think your bottom bracket height would be pretty reasonable.

    RSD also mentioned a 29er specific frame on the horizon in their pinkbike press release a few months ago. I'm looking forward to finding out what that will look like,

  127. #127
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    Quote Originally Posted by chris705 View Post
    I'm looking forward to finding out what that will look like,
    You and me both! Although I'm having a hard time waiting on it, lol.

    Tempted to go to a MiddleChild in the mean time.

    FYI it should look very similar to the MC in aesthetics, Per Alex.
    "I ride to clear my head, my head is clearer when I'm riding SS. Therefore, I choose to ride SS."~ Fullrange Drew

  128. #128
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    Quote Originally Posted by nitrousjunky View Post
    You and me both! Although I'm having a hard time waiting on it, lol.

    Tempted to go to a MiddleChild in the mean time.

    FYI it should look very similar to the MC in aesthetics, Per Alex.
    You won't be disappointed with a Middlechild. Lots of people like the option of running 650b+ and 29. When the new frame is released I will consider it as well. It will be interesting to compare the two frames.

  129. #129
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    Quote Originally Posted by chris705 View Post
    You won't be disappointed with a Middlechild. Lots of people like the option of running 650b+ and 29. When the new frame is released I will consider it as well. It will be interesting to compare the two frames.
    Here's my hang up, I prefer 29x2.6-3.0 in the 29" flavor and MiddleChild will basically only fit 29x2.6 in the last (rear most) couple milometers of adjustment. If I decide to try a MC, I'll probably switch over to B+ (which is the only modern wheel size I haven't ever ridden). I'm a SSer and I'm not sure I want to give up the roll of the larger OD setup to go B+. However after getting a taste of the modern hardtail geometry, I'm getting very tempted.
    "I ride to clear my head, my head is clearer when I'm riding SS. Therefore, I choose to ride SS."~ Fullrange Drew

  130. #130
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    Quote Originally Posted by nitrousjunky View Post
    Here's my hang up, I prefer 29x2.6-3.0 in the 29" flavor and MiddleChild will basically only fit 29x2.6 in the last (rear most) couple milometers of adjustment. If I decide to try a MC, I'll probably switch over to B+ (which is the only modern wheel size I haven't ever ridden). I'm a SSer and I'm not sure I want to give up the roll of the larger OD setup to go B+. However after getting a taste of the modern hardtail geometry, I'm getting very tempted.
    I have only had my 2.3 Aggressor on the rear so far. I am planning on putting a 2.6 specialized tire on the rear soon. My specialized 2.6 tires tend to measure 2.45-2.5 so not a true 2.6. When I do the swap, I will measure and take pictures so you and others can see what the space is like.

  131. #131
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    Quote Originally Posted by nitrousjunky View Post
    Here's my hang up, I prefer 29x2.6-3.0 in the 29" flavor and MiddleChild will basically only fit 29x2.6 in the last (rear most) couple milometers of adjustment. If I decide to try a MC, I'll probably switch over to B+ (which is the only modern wheel size I haven't ever ridden). I'm a SSer and I'm not sure I want to give up the roll of the larger OD setup to go B+. However after getting a taste of the modern hardtail geometry, I'm getting very tempted.
    For what it's worth, I loved 29er, had a few Honzo's, a Canfield EPO, and a Pivot Switchblade. I never thought I'd like plus or want to go smaller since I preferred 29 to 27.5, but when I got the Middle Child I went complete because I didn't have a boost wheelset and wanted to give it a try with 27 plus, and damn it's fun! It's also capable and flickable and turns on a dime. I don't think you'll regret going 27 plus and I have no desire to go 29 at the moment. I ride out of the saddle 90% of the time but geared not SS and I know the importance of short stays for traction. Now imagine short stays and the added traction of a 2.8 tire. It's incredible climbing and boosts confidence a lot cornering and descending. Likes to get rowdy.

  132. #132
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    Quote Originally Posted by carabao View Post
    For what it's worth, I loved 29er, had a few Honzo's, a Canfield EPO, and a Pivot Switchblade. I never thought I'd like plus or want to go smaller since I preferred 29 to 27.5, but when I got the Middle Child I went complete because I didn't have a boost wheelset and wanted to give it a try with 27 plus, and damn it's fun! It's also capable and flickable and turns on a dime. I don't think you'll regret going 27 plus and I have no desire to go 29 at the moment. I ride out of the saddle 90% of the time but geared not SS and I know the importance of short stays for traction. Now imagine short stays and the added traction of a 2.8 tire. It's incredible climbing and boosts confidence a lot cornering and descending. Likes to get rowdy.
    Thanks for the input. Yep, short stays and plus tires make for great traction (I'm on a 29+ Trek Stache)!
    "I ride to clear my head, my head is clearer when I'm riding SS. Therefore, I choose to ride SS."~ Fullrange Drew

  133. #133
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    Plus is a blast on the switchblade too!

  134. #134
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    Last month I decided to hit Hiline on my rsd middle child. It did so well. I can't imagine another hardtail I'd rather have out there.


  135. #135
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    Lookin the part, Hardtail...

    I cannot get enough of my M/C with the awesome feel of nimble, excellences in handling these bikes possess, it just flows. Much like a unit going along a trail. My bike is single speed. Now that I've spent some miles on the loco trails and am getting to know this bike, I just love the performance and attitude of the M/C. When I first referred to my bike as a pithy little fellow, I didn't know how well that term described my bike named Sunspot. Lil' fukker's a delight!


    Thanks for sharing a vid of what looked like a great run!
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  136. #136
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    Easter Sunday ride with the M/C!

    Between rains, out I headed for a gully run and some singletrack speed runs. Partly to test the new gear ratio and partly to spend some quality time with this awesome new bike. The gully crossings are fantastic. The M/C feels so damn good flying off the edge and flying out the other side of the gully. The gully run is a slalom course that is a blast as well. This bike is very well suited for this terrain with the geometry being spot on for it.
    Had to shut it down due to a heavy rain incoming and the M/C is not CSA/UL approved as a lightning suppression device. :/

    Happy Easter and Passover to all...
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  137. #137
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    Just curious, is there any MC riders on the thread that aren't ambassador of RSD? Just looking for unbiased thoughts on the bike.

  138. #138
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    Quote Originally Posted by neabailey View Post
    Just curious, is there any MC riders on the thread that aren't ambassador of RSD? Just looking for unbiased thoughts on the bike.
    Frankly, I refuse to misrepresent a bike based on what company is behind it. Either the bike performs to my liking or it's outta heah.
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  139. #139
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    Quote Originally Posted by neabailey View Post
    Just curious, is there any MC riders on the thread that aren't ambassador of RSD? Just looking for unbiased thoughts on the bike.
    I'm not an ambassador. What do you want to know?
    I like bikes

  140. #140
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    Quote Originally Posted by yzedf View Post
    I'm not an ambassador. What do you want to know?
    Iíd want to hear as much feedback as possible on a bike I canít ride. What it does good, what it could do better, what youíd change, how it compares to others youíve ridden. Ride impressions, how it feels, how it accelerates, how it turns, all the dynamic intangibles that are mainly attributed to frame design that are only felt by riding it. Please..

  141. #141
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    Quote Originally Posted by drivera View Post
    Iíd want to hear as much feedback as possible on a bike I canít ride. What it does good, what it could do better, what youíd change, how it compares to others youíve ridden. Ride impressions, how it feels, how it accelerates, how it turns, all the dynamic intangibles that are mainly attributed to frame design that are only felt by riding it. Please..
    I bought the bike as a frame, it came with a headset, seat clamp and a rear axle. I didn't use the axle as I prefer bolt on. The frame built up very easy, bb threads were clean, head tube was good. The only nitpick is a couple small blemishes at the top of the seat tube that you can't see unless you know to look. Doesn't bother me, but some people wouldn't be able to deal with it. The rubber insert for the dropper post cable actually works!

    The rear axle is very secure, important for me as I'm running it as a singlespeed. No creaks either.

    The bike is a natural jumper, very easy to land smoothly. Manuals are easy, as is moving the rear around. It's not XC agile, it's more stable than that, but not as stable as an enduro bike (I ride a 2017 Giant Reign SX also). You can plow on it if you get in over your head and you just need to hold on for a couple seconds. It's also a better climber than I was expecting, I broke a PR by over 2 minutes tonight on what's usually a 7 minute segment. BB height is good, not too high or low, I'm running it with 170 cranks as my local area has a lot of rocks and roots I need to pedal through. BB and chainstays are nice and stiff, cranks don't twist/flex.

    My build is 29.4lbs (with pedals and Garmin) for a size large with EXO casing tires, 150 dropper and no carbon parts. Weight isn't a concern, but it did come out lighter than expected. A nice surprise.

    Buying process was easy, frame shipped the day the owner said it would and was delivered on time.

    Only thing I'd change would be longer chainstays, but I'm probably in the minority in that point.

    Bike reminds me of a Chromag, but at a reasonable price. Doesn't have that BMX sting when landing jumps/drops.
    I like bikes

  142. #142
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    Thank you! Great feedback. Iím surprised on your weight as well! Throw a pic up if you havenít already. Would like to see it!

  143. #143
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    Im an ambassador, but i can give some feedback. The middle child has a pretty stiff rear end for a steel bike. My alloy chameleon had a more compliant rear triangle. Despite it being stiff, it isn't harsh like most alloy bikes.

    The geo and handling is fantastic for aggressive moves, high speeds, and gnarly terrain. This wouldnt be my first choice for an xc or trail bike, bit for all mountain and ensuro style trails, it's completely in its element. Its a bruiser.

    To me, it corners better than any other hardtail ive ridden, but i corner with my feet, not with steering the bars. Its a manual machine, easy to the bunnyhop, jump, and wheelie. Downsides? Its heavy, like most other aggressive hardtails. Upsides? Cost, hand built, threaded bb, adjustable chainstay length, super burly. It climbs extremely well, especiwlly on technical trails. One other thing i would change is i would route the dropper cable in the downtube too, but now we're gettong pretty picky. I loke thwt it uses q dtandard headset, has a tall stack, and likes to party.

    Its truly a fantastic bike, and it compeletely brings back threjoy and fun of why i started riding in the first place. I love this bike. The closest thing to a middle child is a cromag rootdown, and it has a press fit bb, is more expensive, weighs the same, and doesnt have sliding dropouts.

    If you dont have technical terrain, steep sections or lots of rocks/roots/steps where you ridr, you might be netter off on someting more mellow like a chameleon,honzo, timberjack, stache, or sergeant. This bike is for people who want to play and get rowdy, not chase strava times.

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    I like bikes

  145. #145
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    Quote Originally Posted by hardtail party View Post

    If you dont have technical terrain, steep sections or lots of rocks/roots/steps where you ridr, you might be netter off on someting more mellow like a chameleon,honzo, timberjack, stache, or sergeant. This bike is for people who want to play and get rowdy, not chase strava times.
    Thanks for the review as well!

    I am looking at building up a frame and the RSD and Chameleon are about the same price. Trying to figure out which will be more fun for me and the Georgia trails I ride.

    yzedf : your bike looks great!!

  146. #146
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    Both are great bikes that ride quite differently.

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    35lb hardtail, lol in unsubbed. Yeah I wonít ger it!

  148. #148
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    The middle child weighs the same as a cromag rootdown, and it has slidong dropouts. These burly aggressive bikes arent the lightest bikes around, but once you start pedalling them, you dont notice the weight till mile 10.

  149. #149
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dirt Road View Post
    35lb hardtail, lol in unsubbed. Yeah I wonít ger it!
    Take into consideration this is my own custom build which I am running cushcore, tires over 1000g and rims that are ~600g each. You could drop 4lb by not using cushcore, lighter weight tires, and less burly rims. An expensive light weight cassette would drop another pound as well. I run all these components because it's what it takes to not break parts on my bike the way I ride.

    RSD lists the stock bike at just over 30lb with a dropper post
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  150. #150
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dirt Road View Post
    35lb hardtail, lol in unsubbed. Yeah I wonít ger it!

    Pfft! Build it like a Sherman Tank and you'll have that kind of weight. Is a +bike for the weight weenie roadie that has 18k tied up in an olympic class road bike? Heavens no. They don't have what it takes to do the type of ride a heavy build is required for. A light build is quite easy to do with a MIddleChild and even easier if I were to go with a limited production Ti M/C. Chris is a rather hard core rider that would give a weight weenie bike a fvcking double hernia.

    Frankly, there is a major difference between a Toyota SR5 and an F350 Superduty on many fronts.
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  151. #151
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    Finally a good ride day is approaching. Sunday is looking to be a good opportunity to hit some trails!
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  152. #152
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    Quote Originally Posted by drivera View Post
    Thanks for the review as well!

    I am looking at building up a frame and the RSD and Chameleon are about the same price. Trying to figure out which will be more fun for me and the Georgia trails I ride.

    yzedf : your bike looks great!!
    I live in Georgia as well. I mainly ride Blankets Creek. I demoed the Chameleon R+ version and it was awesome, but I wasn't too fond of that steep head angle. After seeing Steve's video on Hardtail Party, I decided to pull the trigger on the Middle Child, and I'm glad I did! It's a beast when it comes to descending and it seems like it climbs just as well as the Chameleon. Also, I see tons of Chameleons on the trails, so it's nice to have something different. Sixes Pit bike shop by Blankets Creek are RSD dealers so you might be able to try out the bike there.

  153. #153
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    Congrats, and welcome to the rsd family. I'm still loving mine.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hardtail party View Post
    Congrats, and welcome to the rsd family. I'm still loving mine.
    Thanks! I've had it for about 2 months and it's been awesome! It pretty much handles anything I throw at it.

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    so had the opportunity to have a look at an RSD MC locally, although it wasn't my size at all and didn't have chance to throw a leg over it. Frame looks great and I'm really considering picking one up after the re-stocks happen and 'building up' my first frame. Doubt I can handle everything myself, but maybe I can handle some of the swap and learn something along the way.

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    Sweet. I highly recommend doing as much as possible. It's a great way to learn.

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    Quote Originally Posted by drivera View Post
    so had the opportunity to have a look at an RSD MC locally, although it wasn't my size at all and didn't have chance to throw a leg over it. Frame looks great and I'm really considering picking one up after the re-stocks happen and 'building up' my first frame. Doubt I can handle everything myself, but maybe I can handle some of the swap and learn something along the way.
    The build it yourself approach just makes it all the more special. When you have done the deed, you come to know your bike far better than letting someone else have that pleasure. The jones begins as you put the first part on and only grows in intensity as it gets closer to being a bike.

    Congratz!
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    Anyone pulled the trigger on a Ti yet? Ive got an itchy finger for one. Would love to hear some reviews.

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    I have a ti one (and a cro-mo one). I love both, but the ti one is really something special. It's my favorite hardtail I've ever ridden. It's noticeably lighter than my steel mc, and it's more supple. My steel middle child is stiffer than a lot of other steel bikes. The ti MC has the same burly feel, without the weight, and with a bit more give in the chainstays. It beats me up less.

    I'll have a review video coming soon on my YouTube channel.

  160. #160
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    Quote Originally Posted by hardtail party View Post
    I have a ti one (and a cro-mo one). I love both, but the ti one is really something special. It's my favorite hardtail I've ever ridden. It's noticeably lighter than my steel mc, and it's more supple. My steel middle child is stiffer than a lot of other steel bikes. The ti MC has the same burly feel, without the weight, and with a bit more give in the chainstays. It beats me up less.

    I'll have a review video coming soon on my YouTube channel.
    As Ti frames are well known, a far less harsh ride quality.

    My steel frame is treating me quite well as I recuperate from a partially torn tendon. Damn, I hate waiting for injuries to heal.

    On the Ti frame idea, I still consider dropping the coin and going for one. The attention to detail seems to be spot on.
    Leave it to Alex...

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    I've ridden aluminum frames with more compliance than a steel frame, and steel frames with more compliance than an aluminum frame. A lot depends on welds, thickness and size of tubing, design, etc. RSD knocked it out of the park with the Ti MC. If you like the steel MC, and you have the budget for a ti one, don't hesitate. It does everything better. I also love my raw finish - I never have to worry about scratches or chipping my paint.

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    Hardtail, there's many things that make a Ti enticing from the "It's Ti" factor to the compliance of said and the fact that tire clearance is dynamite, the list goes long.
    Alex has done very well with the RSD lineup. Frankly, the only upgrade would be a custom frame.
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  163. #163
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    Quote Originally Posted by BansheeRune View Post
    Hardtail, there's many things that make a Ti enticing from the "It's Ti" factor to the compliance of said and the fact that tire clearance is dynamite, the list goes long.
    Alex has done very well with the RSD lineup. Frankly, the only upgrade would be a custom frame.
    Is the tire clearance better on the TI MC vs the steel MC?
    "I ride to clear my head, my head is clearer when I'm riding SS. Therefore, I choose to ride SS."~ Fullrange Drew

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    Nitrous, that one is a Hardtail question as he's harboring both steel and Ti.

    With my steel frame, I have the rear wheel slammed with a 3.0. Fair clearance.
    Could be improved with an additional link in the chain tho'.
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    Looking into sizing of the Middlechild. I am leaning towards a Medium. I am 5'7.5" tall with a floor to crotch inseam of 29". Seems like the numbers add up. I am asking because my current bike is a Small Surly Instigator and I purchased it before the emergence of short stems became mainstream. With a 22.75" effective top tube, 75mm stem and a 25mm off-set dropper post (I ran bike as a SS ALOT) the bike fits perfectly. I also always bought the smallest frame I could get away with. Considering the modern geometry of a 24" effective top tube and a ~27" standover height the medium just makes more sense. I would forgo the off-set dropper and imagine I would probably land in the range of a ~40mm stem. Anyone care to weigh-in? Is my logic flawed or sound?

    Additionally, help me with the guilt of ordering directly as I hate to cut-out my shop. I am sure I could have them order it but I assume that it would ultimately cost me more money than I need to spend and that seems silly. I completely overhaul my own bikes every season and feel very confident I would be able to assemble this bike on my own. In fact I think I read in this thread the satisfaction people get from building their own rides- I just dusted off and rebuilt my old Intense Tracer (old 4 bar version) for my son. He went NUTS!

    Thanks all for any and all perspectives!

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    At your height I think you could make yourself comfortable on either a small or medium. Your choice will come down to how you prefer your bikes to fit and what kind of riding you will do. Your logic makes perfect sense.

    Myself, for example, am riding a medium Middlechild. I am at the tall end of the medium frames sizing at 5'11". I prefer a smaller bike since I don't love bikes with 460mm reach or more and I wanted the bike to be more well rounded when I ride on the tighter XC style trails close to home. It still rides well on technical downhill because the bike is long and slack by design. I have an inseam of 32" and have the 170mm OneUp post on it with enough room to fit the new 180mm post if I ever switch. Maybe even even 190 or 200mm with their 210mm with a shim. You will likely be able to fit a 150mm post with your inseam.

    Even though you are not going through a shop, you are still supporting a small, passionate brand in the cycling industry (much like your local shop is). They are also Canadian, that is, if you like us Canadians. You are not buying off of chain reaction or from a large direct to consumer brand.

    Building your own frame up is fun. I feel much more connected to my bike having a component set I am comfortable with from year to year.
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    I agree with chris, you could go with a small or med. Which bike are you coming off of? What year? What size? What size stem?

    I'm 5'6" with a 28" inseam. I'm on a small with a 50mm stem and it feels good. The medium is a LOT longer (37mm). I wouldn't mind 5-10mm extra reach on my small, but 37mm would be way too much for me. I typically prefer smaller hardtails than full suspension bikes anyway. Perhaps its the slightly slacker seat tube and the slack head angle of the MC that makes the small fit me so well.

    My enduro full suspension bike has a reach of 450mm and my small RSD MC has a 411mm reach. Same bars, same stem. Surprisingly, it feels fine riding them back to back. The shorter reach on the hardtail is more fun for trials moves and sane speeds, and the long reach is more fun for high speed straight line chunk. Since hardtails aren't the world's best bikes for straightline chunk anyway, I opted for something more playful and small. I can feel that my enduro bike is longer, but not by a ton. The hardtail is slacker, which gives it a longer wheelbase, so it's still got stability without a crazy long reach.

    It's honrable that you want to support your local shop, I get that. If your shop doesn't carry a bike with this same geo (doubtful), then it's not worth riding the wrong bike simply to support your shop. Look at RSD as a small company, just like you look at your small shop. He's passionate about riding, and making killer bikes. It's easier to support him than someone like Specialized or Trek, who won't feel your contribution. The best way to support companies willing to think outside the box like Alex is to purchase from them. Besides, you're going to need chain lube, pedals, cables, crimpers, and you may even use your shop to press in the headset bearings. They make more off maintenance than selling a new bike anyway.

  168. #168
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    Quote Originally Posted by Osco View Post
    Full suspension bikes are under 30 pounds these days.
    No Hard Tail, not even a plus bike should be over 30

    Just over 30 pounds with a dropper,
    I'll stick to my large frame aluminum dropper equipped plus bike at 27.5 pounds.

    I wonder how many even notice that some Hard Tails are heavy ?
    Maybe It's not that big of a deal but I climb some big hills.
    I am not strong so i just personalize the transmission, smaller ring or bigger cassette and i enjoy climbing. I agree all HT over 29 are questionable.

  169. #169
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    If it's cheap, people complain about the weight. If it's light, people complain about the price.

    Weights are on par with cro-mag and other hardcore hardtails. Nobody's buying a cro-mag as an xc race bike. I'll take proper geo over low weight any day. I'll take proper geo AND light weight always, which is why I ride a Ti MC.

    Don't get me wrong, weight absolutely matters, especially for smaller riders. But it's not the most important measurement of a bike. However, weight is the easiest way to quantify a bike. It's objective, it reduces a bike into a single number, and it's easy to compare bikes based off that one number. But it only tells part of the story. It's like evaluating who to date based off their dress size.

    My wife has an Ibis DV9 carbon frame that is half the weight of my RSD MC Steel frame. I wouldn't dream of taking that bike where I take my middle child, but for mellow, long-distance, smooth rides on easier trails, it's the better choice. The ibis is light, and fun because it accelerates so quickly. But the RSD is more fun in every other category, and I smile more riding it, despite pushing another 1-2 lbs on that bike.

  170. #170
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    Chris

    Thanks for the message! I chose my Instigator size exactly for the reasons you described picking the Middlechild. It is giving me the perfect time to pause and really, really think what would fit my riding style. I do love my Surly for the tight way it rides and I think I would be a bit bummed if I lost that tight responsiveness. Also thanks for the perspective on the shop- I didn't really think about it the way you posted it and I appreciate your perspective on that as well.

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    [QUOTE=hardtail party;14221759]I agree with chris, you could go with a small or med. Which bike are you coming off of? What year? What size? What size stem?

    I feel like I am rubbing elbows with Celebrity! Awesome U-Tube channel been a subscriber for a few months now. I currently ride a Surly Instigator 2.0 circa 2014/15. Great bike. I love it. Running a small 22.75" EFF Top Tube, 75mm stem and a 25mm off-set dropper. Set-up this way it fits me like a glove. Biggest reason to upgrade kinda boils down to upgrading suspension (currently running an OEM 140mm RS Secktor)- forks are too expensive NOT to go BOOST and my current wheel set cannot be converted from 100mm to 115mm. I could rebuild a set of CK wheels to 27.5 rims because there is a conversion kit MRP makes but after all that I could see dropping $1,500. Rather I am wondering by spending ~$2,700 with the complete package of a Middlechild: Steel frame with sliders, PIKE, XT and the ability to run a 2.6 sized tire (more appropriate for the 80% of trails I ride on a regular basis) will I be better off in the long-run? Did that make ANY sense?

  172. #172
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    your 25mm offset post is offset toward the rear, correct?

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    LOL. I'm the farthest thing from a celebrity. Thanks for watching the channel though, it means a lot.

    You are correct that a new bike is a much better value than buying a bunch of components one by one to upgrade. In my mind, boost spacing doesn't provide a huge performance advantage, especially if you're using 2.3-2.5" tires. Once you go to the bigger 2.8-3.0 it can help make room for the bigger tires. If all you're looking for is a better fork, I'd spend $400 for a good used fork, get an adapter for your front wheel, and don't look back. If you're hoping to build up a killer wheelset to move to another bike one day, it makes sense to go boost for compatibility's sake, and at that point, it makes sense to buy a complete bike.


    The MC is going to ride quite different from the instigator 2.0 with a 3* slacker hta, and a 25mm shorter stem. It's going to favor more aggressive riding and steeper terrain. The chainstays should feel about the same, so that's good.

    If you're riding mostly flat stuff without much chunk (rocks smaller than watermelons), I'd pick up a nice used fork. I like a pike best myself, but a 36, 34, dvo diamond, helm, any of those should be great for what you need. And you can just get some boost adapters to make your front wheel fit.

    If you're looking for a hardtail that rides quite different from your instagator and can tackle some seriously steep and chunky terrain (lots of watermelon sized rocks) and jumps, the MC complete build is a great setup. It's not going to win any XC races, but it's going to be a sturdy, reliable bike.

    Hope that helps.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hardtail party View Post
    LOL. I'm the farthest thing from a celebrity. Thanks for watching the channel though, it means a lot.


    If you're riding mostly flat stuff without much chunk (rocks smaller than watermelons), I'd pick up a nice used fork. I like a pike best myself, but a 36, 34, dvo diamond, helm, any of those should be great for what you need. And you can just get some boost adapters to make your front wheel fit.

    If you're looking for a hardtail that rides quite different from your instagator and can tackle some seriously steep and chunky terrain (lots of watermelon sized rocks) and jumps, the MC complete build is a great setup. It's not going to win any XC races, but it's going to be a sturdy, reliable bike.

    Hope that helps.
    Totally helps. I do like the Instigator for what I need- The idea of a used fork really is not something I had considered and probably should take the pause and do so. I will do some more research and circle back.

    You gotta head up to the NE! There is a party in Kingdom Vermont! Hardtails rule!

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    NJ Gator,

    There are a few things of note with RSD. One is the fact that concerns and issues are addressed 7 days a week. unlike any other company out there.

    On the build it yourself front, it's the only way to fly! Other peeps can simply obey the cardinal rule, MITTS OFF!!
    The equipment list is very respectable.
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  176. #176
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    So earlier on I was considering buying RSD frame and swapping parts over from my bike. I decided to sell the bike whole and now am shopping for a complete.

    RSD is at the top of the list but is also a budget stretch as I want a dropper. I've also seen the Jenson build Chromag Wideangle, which seems to be comparable. Any thoughts from anyone that's compared both or maybe even ridden both?

    https://www.jensonusa.com/Chromag-Wi...xclusive-Build

  177. #177
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    The 2020 rootdown and the MC are very similar geo wise. I've ridden a rootdown and MC back to back. The rootdown is slightly more compliant. The RSD has sliding dropouts, so more options to run it single speed or adjust your rear center (chainstay length). , or 415 --430mm chainstay. Both are great bikes.

    Depending on the year of the rootdown, it may have the same head angle as the MC or not. I believe the prior years had a 66 and 65* hta. The current bike has a 64* ht like the middle child.

    FYI, the link you have there is to the wideangle, not the rootdown. I haven't ridden a wideangle yet, but I'd like to try one.

    I also check the max tire width for a rootdown. A lot of "plus" bikes these days can only take a 2.6" wide tire. I definitely prefer the ability to ride 2.8-3.0, which the MC can do (caveat: some 3.0s may not fit).

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    Sorry - mistyped, the link is correct for the Wide-angle. The build on that one is fairly comparable to the RSD MC, although I think the MC dropper is better.

    I should also say my intended use is just just fun trail riding, no bikepacking, or super long all-day rides. 2.8's are the max tire I'll need. In fact I'd probably run 2.6rear and 2.8 front, to try to get it to roll a bit quicker. My previous bike Airborne Griffin had 3.25 front and 3.0 rear tires, and while it was still great fun I felt like it was a bit overkill for me. Georgia trails are more about roots and small rocks, so trying to get some rolling speed with a good dose of traction is enough. I'm not racing or anything, but just don't want to carry extra weight or rolling resistance if not needed. Kinda like to slide the rear a bit sometimes as well - just for fun

    Also excited to try a steel framed mtb to see the difference between the previous Aluminum Airbornes I had.

  179. #179
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    Quote Originally Posted by drivera View Post
    Sorry - mistyped, the link is correct for the Wide-angle. The build on that one is fairly comparable to the RSD MC, although I think the MC dropper is better.

    I should also say my intended use is just just fun trail riding, no bikepacking, or super long all-day rides. 2.8's are the max tire I'll need. In fact I'd probably run 2.6rear and 2.8 front, to try to get it to roll a bit quicker. My previous bike Airborne Griffin had 3.25 front and 3.0 rear tires, and while it was still great fun I felt like it was a bit overkill for me. Georgia trails are more about roots and small rocks, so trying to get some rolling speed with a good dose of traction is enough. I'm not racing or anything, but just don't want to carry extra weight or rolling resistance if not needed. Kinda like to slide the rear a bit sometimes as well - just for fun

    Also excited to try a steel framed mtb to see the difference between the previous Aluminum Airbornes I had.
    Frankly, there's a great point of interest with sliding dropouts. I can run my M/C with Nobby Nic 3.0's and slammed.
    In 29, the M/C is limited to 2.6, based on RSD's website.

    On another note, can you get a response from company X on a Saturday?

    My setup is ether a pair of Nobby or a pair of Rocket Ron 3.0's. They roll well enough that I am more often than not catching up with others on minus bikes that cannot believe a +bike is catching em. All the while, I still hear how + is slow, blah blah blah! I am on a one speed automatic, for heavens sake...

    For the ultimate in "Canadian Army Knife" style bikes there is the Sergeant. 2.whatevuh, 4.0, 29 x 3.0.
    For the fun factory, the MiddleChild.

    RSD MIddleChild - CrMo-sunspot-1.jpg
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  180. #180
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    Going from a 69* hta to a 64* hta is going to feel quite different.

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    The wide angle listed is a non boost pike and comes with 2.3 tires. Very capable if that is what you are looking for but based on your post I think you want a boost-spaced fork.

    Quote Originally Posted by drivera View Post
    Sorry - mistyped, the link is correct for the Wide-angle. The build on that one is fairly comparable to the RSD MC, although I think the MC dropper is better.

    I should also say my intended use is just just fun trail riding, no bikepacking, or super long all-day rides. 2.8's are the max tire I'll need. In fact I'd probably run 2.6rear and 2.8 front, to try to get it to roll a bit quicker. My previous bike Airborne Griffin had 3.25 front and 3.0 rear tires, and while it was still great fun I felt like it was a bit overkill for me. Georgia trails are more about roots and small rocks, so trying to get some rolling speed with a good dose of traction is enough. I'm not racing or anything, but just don't want to carry extra weight or rolling resistance if not needed. Kinda like to slide the rear a bit sometimes as well - just for fun

    Also excited to try a steel framed mtb to see the difference between the previous Aluminum Airbornes I had.

  182. #182
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    Quote Originally Posted by NJ Gator View Post
    The wide angle listed is a non boost pike and comes with 2.3 tires. Very capable if that is what you are looking for but based on your post I think you want a boost-spaced fork.
    Not sure how I missed that! This definitely puts the RSD even more ahead.

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    Glad I could help! Seemed like an odd combination 148mm rear hub paired with a 100MM front...

  184. #184
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    Hoping to get some wisdom from the MC group here. I just received and assembled my MC, medium turquoise. I also ride an Ibis Ripley LS. Traded up the Specialized Fuse expert for the MC. I went for the MC bc I have a long history of riding SS steel bikes, but haven't had one in several years bc I couldn't find one with advanced geometry. I've really liked my Fuse as a second bike. Just wanted something more aggressive, with better components and versatility (SS capabilities) and love the feel of steel.

    After one 20mi ride as an 11spd, a couple issues I'm hoping others could help me consider. One is that the ride seems harsh. I thought the Fuse was a bit harsh and a steel frame would be more compliant, but this seems easily as stiff or stiffer than the Fuse. Any chance this will "break in" a bit with more use? I did not feel much difference with lowered tire pressures.

    The other thing is how slow I felt on the bike. I'm not sure what factors are contributing to this. I know it's heavier than the Fuse, but not by much. I don't think the wheelset is much heavier, but it could be. The tires should be the same weight. The minion on the front is more aggressive than the purgatory on the fuse, but I have the same rear tire installed (Rekon). It was much harder to gain and keep momentum and steering felt a bit sluggish.


    I really love the fit of the bike and the geometry seems excellent for both climbing and descending. Just not sure what to do about the above. Lighter wheelset? Less aggressive tires? set up as 29er? Swap frame for chameleon?

    Thanks in advance!

  185. #185
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    Quote Originally Posted by hgravez View Post
    Hoping to get some wisdom from the MC group here. I just received and assembled my MC, medium turquoise. I also ride an Ibis Ripley LS. Traded up the Specialized Fuse expert for the MC. I went for the MC bc I have a long history of riding SS steel bikes, but haven't had one in several years bc I couldn't find one with advanced geometry. I've really liked my Fuse as a second bike. Just wanted something more aggressive, with better components and versatility (SS capabilities) and love the feel of steel.

    After one 20mi ride as an 11spd, a couple issues I'm hoping others could help me consider. One is that the ride seems harsh. I thought the Fuse was a bit harsh and a steel frame would be more compliant, but this seems easily as stiff or stiffer than the Fuse. Any chance this will "break in" a bit with more use? I did not feel much difference with lowered tire pressures.

    The other thing is how slow I felt on the bike. I'm not sure what factors are contributing to this. I know it's heavier than the Fuse, but not by much. I don't think the wheelset is much heavier, but it could be. The tires should be the same weight. The minion on the front is more aggressive than the purgatory on the fuse, but I have the same rear tire installed (Rekon). It was much harder to gain and keep momentum and steering felt a bit sluggish.


    I really love the fit of the bike and the geometry seems excellent for both climbing and descending. Just not sure what to do about the above. Lighter wheelset? Less aggressive tires? set up as 29er? Swap frame for chameleon?

    Thanks in advance!
    Mine is set up as a 29er and singlespeed. You're right, it's a bit harsher than expected. On the other hand, it's not a bike that you'll flex the tire into the chain stays.

    As a 29er it's a fast bike, both up and down. On my local loop I've set a few PR's on technical climbs, beating my old carbon xc hardtail. I do avoid a couple of the optional drops with harsh landings...
    I like bikes

  186. #186
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    Quote Originally Posted by hgravez View Post
    Hoping to get some wisdom from the MC group here. I just received and assembled my MC, medium turquoise. I also ride an Ibis Ripley LS. Traded up the Specialized Fuse expert for the MC. I went for the MC bc I have a long history of riding SS steel bikes, but haven't had one in several years bc I couldn't find one with advanced geometry. I've really liked my Fuse as a second bike. Just wanted something more aggressive, with better components and versatility (SS capabilities) and love the feel of steel.

    After one 20mi ride as an 11spd, a couple issues I'm hoping others could help me consider. One is that the ride seems harsh. I thought the Fuse was a bit harsh and a steel frame would be more compliant, but this seems easily as stiff or stiffer than the Fuse. Any chance this will "break in" a bit with more use? I did not feel much difference with lowered tire pressures.

    The other thing is how slow I felt on the bike. I'm not sure what factors are contributing to this. I know it's heavier than the Fuse, but not by much. I don't think the wheelset is much heavier, but it could be. The tires should be the same weight. The minion on the front is more aggressive than the purgatory on the fuse, but I have the same rear tire installed (Rekon). It was much harder to gain and keep momentum and steering felt a bit sluggish.


    I really love the fit of the bike and the geometry seems excellent for both climbing and descending. Just not sure what to do about the above. Lighter wheelset? Less aggressive tires? set up as 29er? Swap frame for chameleon?

    Thanks in advance!
    Frankly, I have never had my M/C set up with gears. It's been a SS since day one. Gear swaps have happened as time passed and I became stronger. Tire choice in plus is a challenge as it can make or break the feel and performance.
    One thing I did notice was the bike performed better with each ride and I learned where the performance lives for trail ripping. Take the time to get to know the bike.
    As for lighter components, yeah, there are plenty to choose from however, in due time. Perhaps, tires for something with less rolling resistance. Maxxis is not known for light tires.

    Gearing? Does it fall in where you are comfortable with it? Too tall, and sluggish, too short and run out of gear early.

    Fork pressure? That too can lead to a harsh ride.

    I change from Nobby Nic's to Rocket Ron's depending on the trail choice.

    On the ride quality... I find it to be rather nice for the most part. Tire pressure 10-12 front, 12-14 rear for a bean pole at 150 #'s.
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  187. #187
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    I tried a used bike for sale 10 days ago. Tires size and rims were real close to mine.
    It was just terribly slow with 2 purgatory.
    You might be happier with 2 Rekons.
    Maybe a 2.8 front with rear 2.6?
    I am on 27.5 40 mm rims and love all that grip.
    Without a car i pedal to the trails and back so my combo for good rolling and grip is 3.0 Chronicle/2.8 Rekon
    13 PSI for a light rider.

  188. #188
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    Quote Originally Posted by BansheeRune View Post
    Frankly, I have never had my M/C set up with gears. It's been a SS since day one. Gear swaps have happened as time passed and I became stronger. Tire choice in plus is a challenge as it can make or break the feel and performance.
    One thing I did notice was the bike performed better with each ride and I learned where the performance lives for trail ripping. Take the time to get to know the bike.
    As for lighter components, yeah, there are plenty to choose from however, in due time. Perhaps, tires for something with less rolling resistance. Maxxis is not known for light tires.

    Gearing? Does it fall in where you are comfortable with it? Too tall, and sluggish, too short and run out of gear early.

    Fork pressure? That too can lead to a harsh ride.

    I change from Nobby Nic's to Rocket Ron's depending on the trail choice.

    On the ride quality... I find it to be rather nice for the most part. Tire pressure 10-12 front, 12-14 rear for a bean pole at 150 #'s.
    Great. Thanks for the advice. To clarify, are you running 27.5+ SS or 29er SS? What tire widths?

    Currently, with the 11spd, I'm totally happy with the gearing. I did not use the 46t cog that much and, when I did, it was helpful/needed. Most of what I noticed was the difficulty gaining momentum even going downhill, and the difficulty keeping it when transitioning to flat or mild uphill. Also slow steering.

    I guess I never thought the Rekon was great as a rear tire on the Fuse. The Specialized Ground Control seemed better rolling before I tore it open. I've got a WTB Ranger 2.8 I could put on the back (although that is not any lighter), or I could get a Maxxis Ikon as those are a bit lighter. I really like Ibis wheels and could get a set of 738s which would drop ~270g from rotating weight. I definitely plan to get to know the bike a bit before doing anything drastic. It did take me some time with the Fuse.

    I currently live in Montana and the trails here are pretty technical with steep ups and long ripping downs. I'm moving to Boise pretty soon and definitely want a hardtail for the immediate foothills since that terrain has almost no technical features and is mostly sandy over hardpack with sustained climbing.

  189. #189
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    I'd give it a few more rides to get used to it. The frame won't "break in", but your riding will adapt and you'll most likely start clicking with it. Moving from a dated geo to today's modern geo takes some time to get used to.

    I agree, this is a stiff bike for steel, especially the rear triangle. I wish it were a little more compliant and soft. The Ti version is definitely more compliant, and it has the ride quality I was expecting for the MC cro-mo. That being said, The MC Cro-mo still mutes a lot of the terrain. You don't get the zingy feel that an aluminum frame often gets. You'll notice less vibration going to your hands (espeically vs the fuse), but the rear triangle is definitely stiff. I can dial that out with tire pressure though. What tire pressures are you running?

    I too prefer the ground control over a rekon. The rekon rolls fast, but traction has been awful for me, especially climbing traction on rocky and ledgy terrain. The sidwewalls are too flexy for my preferences too, even with cushcore. But I have buddies who swear by the rekon. If I lived in norcal, I'd run a rekon rear.

    My favorite rear tire for where I ride is a DHR2, but it's pretty draggy and slow for the flat stuff. Where I live we have a lot of steep terrain, so it makes a lot of sense. If I rode buff, flat XC trails, I'd switch to a 29er setup. If you feel the ride is too harsh, I wouldn't recommend 29ers, they're just going to make it feel more harsh.

    I think it all depends on your trails. If your trails are mostly flat, or there aren't many places to get it up above 15/20mph, it's going to be tough to take full advantage of the geometry of the MC and the burly parts. The geo still works great on flats, but the weight of the burly components is going to make it feel sluggish. For that stuff a lighter, twitchier XC/Trail hardtail is going to zip along a bit better.

    What's your riding terrain like? My recommendations for tires will vary depending on where you ride and what you're into. What part of montana? Whitefish has some killer spots to put the MC through its paces.

    You'll notice the RSD doesn't rattle like a fuse. A fuse sounds like a bucket of bolts rolling down a hill. The RSD is nice and quiet.

    For Boise, take that bike up to Bogus Basin and have a blast. I would ride this bike on any trail in Boise. It'll be a blast at the Eagle Bike park and BMX park too. It really comes alive on aggressive, fast terrain. Don't think of it as a bike only for smooth, flat stuff. This bike was meant to rip!

    The "sluggish" steering you're feeling is most likely the slacker head angle. It'll take a bit to get used to this. This is one of those "modern" geo changes you mentioned. However, just because it's the trend today doesn't mean it's for everyone. I recommend learning to steer by counter-steering and leaning the bike, rather than turning at the bars, and then you may fall in love with the slack head angle. These modern bikes require a modern riding style (i.e. steering with bike/body separation and leaning the bike). When you learn to steer like this, the bike really comes alive.

    If you don't need an aggressive bike, and you're looking for something for slower paces or more XC style, you may prefer a chameleon or a timberjack (almost identical to the chameleon for far less money). The chameleon frame is lighter and more forgiving, but it's got a fairly steep head angle, and it's stupid expensive. I much prefer my middle child, despite it being heavier. For my riding style, I haven't found a hardtail I like more.

    Give it some time, and take it on the rowdiest trails you've got. I'm betting you'll fall more and more in love with it every ride.

  190. #190
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    To learn more about effective cornering, check out these videos.

    Nate Hills. Pay attention to the angle of his stem in turns. Notice how he leans the bike, but doesn't really turn the bars side to side. His stem is almost always straight ahead on turns. This is because he's leaning and engaging the cornering nobs to corner. It's a lot like a motorcycle, how you counter-steer. you actually steer right to go left. it lets the bike flop over and fall into the turn.



    Same with Jeff Kendall Weed.


  191. #191
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    What you can't see in those video above is how important footwork is. For instruction on how to do this, Simon Lawton is your guy. Best explanation I've seen anywhere. If you're ever in Seattle, I HIGHLY recommend a clinic from him. Here are a few videos to illustrate.






  192. #192
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    A few more.






  193. #193
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    Quote Originally Posted by hgravez View Post
    Great. Thanks for the advice. To clarify, are you running 27.5+ SS or 29er SS? What tire widths?

    Currently, with the 11spd, I'm totally happy with the gearing. I did not use the 46t cog that much and, when I did, it was helpful/needed. Most of what I noticed was the difficulty gaining momentum even going downhill, and the difficulty keeping it when transitioning to flat or mild uphill. Also slow steering.

    I guess I never thought the Rekon was great as a rear tire on the Fuse. The Specialized Ground Control seemed better rolling before I tore it open. I've got a WTB Ranger 2.8 I could put on the back (although that is not any lighter), or I could get a Maxxis Ikon as those are a bit lighter. I really like Ibis wheels and could get a set of 738s which would drop ~270g from rotating weight. I definitely plan to get to know the bike a bit before doing anything drastic. It did take me some time with the Fuse.

    I currently live in Montana and the trails here are pretty technical with steep ups and long ripping downs. I'm moving to Boise pretty soon and definitely want a hardtail for the immediate foothills since that terrain has almost no technical features and is mostly sandy over hardpack with sustained climbing.
    I am running a 27.5 x 3.0 and lovin it. One thing that SS started out as short gears to regain lost strength. Once that process moved forward, I changed the gearing a bit taller to have something to pull against and bring the cadence down some. I still enjoy spinning it up rather high in cadence as it feels good.
    Some of my backcountry rides are loose, loamy ground that requires low tires to be efficient however, the trails do need more pressure.
    These frames are indeed stiff but getting to know the ride and what to do takes some miles and a little adjustment to riding style. Cornering on plus is different from 2.whatever tire bikes and takes some time to learn the handling characteristics. Slow steering indicates technique needs tweaking. Don't fret, it does take time and patience.
    Seeming slow on momentum can be overcome with discovering where your powerband lives. Again, it takes time to find that aspect and adjust to it. With a Sergeant V1 and Wildcat and gears, it took time to sort SS.

    Developing a "light" riding style is a great thing with the MiddleChild. Not only does it make lower tire pressure possible, it takes out most, if not all of the harshness.

    Also note what Hardtail pointed out! I take my M/C on some high speed flow trails frequently. It is very much at home there as well as parks, etc.
    Get fAt, Stay fAt, Ride fAt
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  194. #194
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    I was kinda hoping the CrMO would deliver that expected ride quality that the Ti version brings. Obviously would love the Ti but it's way above budget. The complete MC is already stretching it for me. Still haven't pulled the trigger as I'm still torn on what to go with.

  195. #195
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    It's a challenging place to be. Making a big ticket purchase is a bit stressful when the budget is stretched as it is.
    The steel is rather stiff, yes but the Ti price does take it out of budget really.

    I'm thinking you will bond with the M/C more with more time spent riding, playing and getting used to the way it works and performs. Playful bike, indeed!
    Weight is not too shabby for what I cobbled together. Sure, could lose a little weight but at what cost?
    Get fAt, Stay fAt, Ride fAt
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  196. #196
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    On my second ride, things were definitely better. Probably adjusting to the bike, and had the tire pressure better dialed (150lbs all geared up for ~12psi F, ~13psi R). Definitely felt more of the steel feel. The only thing that I changed was a slightly lighter saddle since the stock saddle was uncomfortable for me (too wide). I do think I'll swap for lighter wheels and tires with lower rolling resistance. Ibis 738s are 1880g, compared to 2150g for the Duroc 50mm. Not too expensive.

  197. #197
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    Quote Originally Posted by hgravez View Post
    On my second ride, things were definitely better. Probably adjusting to the bike, and had the tire pressure better dialed (150lbs all geared up for ~12psi F, ~13psi R). Definitely felt more of the steel feel. The only thing that I changed was a slightly lighter saddle since the stock saddle was uncomfortable for me (too wide). I do think I'll swap for lighter wheels and tires with lower rolling resistance. Ibis 738s are 1880g, compared to 2150g for the Duroc 50mm. Not too expensive.
    I too am considering the next pair of wheels. Hubs will be the difficult part since Onyx has my undivided attention. Making this bike perform more precisely with near zero lash engagement is key to a great experience.
    I did test the MC with the wheels offa da Wildcat with their lovely Onyx hubs and it was awesome. Ugh, the cost of em is sky high tho' and nothing else out there comes close.

    On the wheels... Tire choice can demolish the weight saving in an instant. Some plus tires out weigh my 4.8's on the fatty and are just no.

    As for seats, one thing I have no interest in, is a seat so hard that it may as well be made of microlam or cast iron, for that matter.

    The plus experience! Tire pressure variance of one psi is quite noticeable and can change the ride quality for good or not so good. It does require getting a feel for. Also requires a tweak for terrain conditions as well as temperature, being high volume, low pressure as opposed to 2.nothanks tires of times gone by.

    Another aspect of plus that many reviewers refuse to acknowledge is the difference in body English required of plus vs. narrow tire bikes. They leave that out of reviews and it is painfully obvious that they need to learn that part of plus to be objective.

    Have you tweaked the fork yet? That is an interesting line of experiments that are worthy.
    Get fAt, Stay fAt, Ride fAt
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  198. #198
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    I am just having fun on my 27.5+ these last 4 months.
    With 13 PSI, 40 mm, proper fork pressure and rebound
    and a padded saddle i just found found a sweet ride.

  199. #199
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    Quote Originally Posted by 33red View Post
    I am just having fun on my 27.5+ these last 4 months.
    With 13 PSI, 40 mm, proper fork pressure and rebound
    and a padded saddle i just found found a sweet ride.
    Hmmm, sounds very familiar, ya bean pole!

    Remember, it takes one to know one...
    Get fAt, Stay fAt, Ride fAt
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  200. #200
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    Middle Child 29íer build

    Built this one for my 12yo son. He was thrashing his aluminum hardtail. XTR shifter with XT med cage rear meshed with a Sunrace 11-50 cassette. I9 101 hubs laced up to Stanís mk3 hoops, 29mm ID I believe. Holding up very well. Now I just wait for him to outgrow it so it can be mine.

    RSD MIddleChild - CrMo-e9dc30eb-485f-4c29-b7f7-d0330f84b9d6.jpgRSD MIddleChild - CrMo-3250287a-448b-407c-823d-2b578c5ab88d.jpgRSD MIddleChild - CrMo-07a7b4af-3aa7-44c8-8158-ee6456ad4bc7.jpg

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